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Class 2A softball: Manti rolls into championship series

Published May 10, 2014 2:15 pm

Class 2A softball • Undefeated Templars dominate San Juan.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Spanish Fork • They broke into song before the first pitch was even thrown.

It's doesn't appear as anything can keep the Manti softball team from singing out of tune, because the Templars are now just one game away from changing the verse from "Hallelujah" to "We are the Champions."

Manti earned a spot in the Class 2A state title game after beating San Juan 10-1.

"We have such a strong bond and team unity. We're just out there having fun," said Manti pitcher Kali Thomson. "We're not afraid to sing out loud — it's just something that keeps us calm and we play better when we're having fun."

The Templars are the only undefeated team left in the tournament, and considering how dominating they've been, it is highly unlikely that anyone can beat this team once, let alone twice.

Manti has outscored its opponents 53-3 in its first four tournament games, and the win over San Juan was the first game that didn't end early due to the 10-run rule.

"They seemed to me like they were more calm today than yesterday," said Manti coach Susan Hatch. "I just told them to have fun. They've been playing eight years for this and so just to live in the moment. Kali's pitching is awesome, but she has a great defense behind her and she couldn't do that without her defense."

San Juan managed just six hits against Thomson, who picked up her fourth win of the tournament. The Broncos had a runner in scoring position just once until Kellie Palmer led off the sixth with a solo home run, but by then it didn't matter; Thomson had all the offense she would need.

Manti scored at least one run in each of the first five innings. Elizabeth Palmer set the tone for the game in the first when she doubled and scored on a Thomson single.

San Juan had the same problem every other team has had with Manti, they simply couldn't keep the Templars' off base.

Kemri Stilson singled in a run in the second and the Templars then scored three more runs in the third. Palmer and Amanda Naylor each had RBI singles.

Mikaela Cox tripled and scored on a Madison Blauer single in the fifth to push the lead to 6-0 and put the game out of reach.

Manti will try to finish off a state tournament in the title game, scheduled for Saturday at 12:15 p.m. in Spanish Fork. Class 2A baseball*

Saturday

At Kearns High School

Winners' bracket final

• Grand vs. Beaver,4:30 p.m.

Losers' bracket

• Manti vs. Emery,11 a.m.

• North Sevier vs. Millard, 1:30 p.m.

• Winners, 7 p.m.

Tuesday

At Utah Valley University

Losers' bracket final

• Grand/Beaver loser vs. losers' bracket winner, 9 a.m.

Championship series

• Grand/Beaver winner vs. losers' bracket winner, 11 a.m.

• Rematch (if necessary), 20 minutes after conclusion of first game

* — Friday's baseball games postponed to Saturday due to inclement weather —

Class 2A softball

Friday

Winners' bracket final

• Manti 10, San Juan 1

Losers' bracket

• South Summit 8, Emery 2

Saturday

Losers' bracket final

• San Juan vs. South Summit, 10 a.m.

Championship series

• Manti vs. San Juan/South Summit winner, 12:15 p.m.

• Rematch (if necessary), 15 minutes after conclusion of first game

Note: All games played at Spanish Fork Softball Complex